Millard Fillmore Blaine, 92, was born June 22, 1917 near Bible Grove, Missouri, died Tuesday, April 20, 2010 in Memphis Missouri at the Scotland County Care Center.
Millard was the 11th child of 13 born to William and Alta (Hunter) Blaine. He grew up on a farm near Bible Grove, attended school at Bible Grove, and later at the University of Missouri, obtaining a degree in agronomy.
He served in the Army Air Corps during WWII as an aircraft mechanic. He spent much of that time in the Aleutian Islands. After the war ended, he taught agriculture to returning war veterans.
Millard married Muriel (Wright) Blaine November 21, 1945. To this marriage four children were born. Michael Millard in 1946, Maurice Wright in 1948, Myron Dee in 1950, and Myrna Beth in 1960.
After teaching, Millard and Muriel bought a farm in Adair County and farmed for several years. A hog cholera epidemic in 1963 resulted in the sale of the farm and Millard going to work for the Soil Conservation Service as a District Conservationist. He worked in Shelby County, Johnson County, Miller County, Knox County, and finally Grundy County. He retired from the Soil Conservation Service in 1982 as the Resource Conservationist over the first Targeted Conservation Area in Missouri with headquarters at Trenton, Missouri.
After retirement, Millard and Muriel lived in Kirksville, then rural Knox County, and finally in Memphis.
Millard was a member of First Baptist Church in Memphis. He served as a deacon there and in many of the Southern Baptist Churches they attended in the various locations of their residence. He was always a very active member in support of his church’s ongoing work. He did manual labor where it was necessary and also served on several pastor search committees over the years. The Lord, then his family, were the priorities of his life.
He was also an avid outdoorsman. He enjoyed fishing and hunting as well as yard work and gardening. He loved to hunt for mushrooms in the spring. He looked forward each year to the family deer hunt. The family gatherings to hunt, swap stories, and then butcher deer together were times he loved.
A meaningful day of Millard’s life was the WWII Honor Flight he was invited to participate in November 10, 2009. Veterans were taken at no cost to see the WWII memorial, and other memorials, in Washington D.C. on a whirlwind one day trip. He deeply appreciated that day and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Millard was preceded in death by his parents and 10 of his 12 brothers and sisters.
He is survived by his wife Muriel of Memphis, MO; their 4 children, Michael and wife Pamela of Baring, MO, Maurice (Reese) and wife Barb of Shelbina, MO, Myron and wife Peggy of Hannibal, MO, and Myrna of Columbia, MO; 10 grandchildren: Julie Morris (and Barney), Jeanna Wilkinson (and Joe), Jeremy Blaine, Justin Blaine, Jeff Blaine (and Stephanie), Jon Blaine (and Angela), James Blaine (and Cindi), Kisha Grossnickle (and Chris), Bill Blaine (and Deena), Matthew Blaine (and Becky); 27 great grandchildren; and 2 great great grand children; two Sisters, Maxine Brewer (and Hershel), and Madeline Phillips (and Leo); and a host of other family and friends.
A visitation, with family present from 6 until 8 P.M. to greet relatives and friends, was held on Friday, April 23 at the First Baptist Church in Memphis.
Funeral services were held Saturday, April 24, 2010 at 1 P.M. at the First Baptist Church in Memphis with Brother Troy Barrett officiating. Joann Swanson was the pianist. Burial followed the service in Park View Memorial Gardens at Kirksville, Missouri. Casket bearers were Jeremy Blaine, Jon Blaine, James Blaine, William Blaine, Matthew Blaine and Barney Morris. Honorary bearers were Julie Morris, Jeanna Wilkinson, Kisha Grossnickle, Justin Blaine, Jeff Blaine, Jim Brewer and Joe Wilkinson.
Military honors were accorded by the VFW Wallace W. Gillespie Memorial Post 4958.
Memorials may be made to the Missouri Baptist Children’s Home or The Baptist Home and may be left at the church or mailed to Memphis Funeral Home, 378 South Market Street, Memphis, Missouri 63555.
Online condolences may be made to the Blaine family via[email protected].
Arrangements are under the direction of Memphis Funeral Home.